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Development and Validation of a Finite Element Model of the Lower Limb

[+] Author Affiliations
Costin Untaroiu, Kurosh Darvish, Jeff Crandall

University of Virginia

Bing Deng, J. T. Wang

General Motors Research & Development

Paper No. IMECE2004-61583, pp. 53-62; 10 pages
  • ASME 2004 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Transportation: Transportation and Environment
  • Anaheim, California, USA, November 13 – 19, 2004
  • Conference Sponsors: Transportation
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4722-5 | eISBN: 0-7918-4178-2, 0-7918-4179-0, 0-7918-4180-4
  • Copyright © 2004 by ASME


Pedestrians struck by a vehicle frequently sustain lower limb injuries. Moreover, the biomechanics of the lower limb under lateral impact influences the trajectory of the pedestrian and subsequent injuries to the pelvis, thorax, and head. In order to increase the understanding of injury mechanisms in the lower limb, a finite element (FE) model of the lower limb was developed. The geometry of the bones and flesh was originally obtained from the Visible Human Project Database and was scaled to a 50th percentile male. The geometry of the knee ligaments was originally obtained from the 3D-CAD-Browser Database and was scaled according to the published anatomical data to align with the bones and the corresponding insertion sites. The FE mesh consists mostly of hexahedral elements which was developed using a structural mesh generator. The material and failure properties were initially selected from the literature and were later tuned based on the validation tests. The FE model was validated using the literature data and several cadaveric component tests performed specifically for model development and evaluation. The validation tests included quasi-static and dynamic lateral three-point-bend tests of the femur and the leg with flesh, and lateral four-point-bend tests of the knee joint.

Copyright © 2004 by ASME



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